The University of Johannesburg (UJ) hosted the 11th Regional Plant Biotechnology Forum on the 13th of April 2015 at the UJ’s Council Chambers. Prof Ian Dubery and Dr Lizelle Piater worked closely with the ACGT in organising the forum that was attended by 56 scientists and students represented by all the ACGT partner institutions.
The forum programme had six speakers, with Dr Paul Hills from the Stellenbosch University (SUN) being the keynote speaker for the day. Dr Paul Hills has been lecturing at SUN since 2008 within the Institute for Plant Biotechnology and his research interests relates to “how plant growth is regulated by myriad of small signalling molecules present in the environment, whether from biotic (e.g. bacterial, fungal, plant) or abiotic (e.g. fire) source.” Dr Hills gave a fascinating talk at the forum on “Overexpression of fungal volatile biosynthetic genes for enhanced growth in Arabidopsis”.
Dr Khayalethu Ntushelo followed with another interesting talk on “Metagenomic analysis of spoiled potato and tomato and the use of the dominant bacterial species in plant growth studies”. Dr Ntushelo is a senior lecturer from the University of South Africa with research interests in plant-microbe interactions. Ms Nikita Da Camara, Dr Arnaud Djami-Tchatchou and Ms Sherrie-Ann New from UJ; as well as Prof Dave Berger from the University of Pretoria, gave captivating talks on their current research.
A “Poster Session” at this forum was replaced by a “Short-Presentation Session”. The following researchers gave 10 minute presentations at the forum:
– Ms Natrisha Devnarain (CSIR/UP) – Unravelling genetic mechanisms of drought tolerance in sorghum
– Dr Pierre Durand (Wits) – Genome sequencing projects in microalgae
– Prof Oleg Reva (UP) – Distribution and alternative strategies of root colonization in plant growth promoting Bacillus
– Ms Stephanie Cornelissen (ARC) – Characterisation of the QTL associated with chill requirement during endodormancy in Malus x domestica Borkh
The attendees were afforded an opportunity to network over lunch after all the presentations were completed.
To access the main presentations, please click on the title below:
• Dr Paul Hills (SUN) – Overexpression of fungal volatile biosynthetic genes for enhanced
growth in Arabidopsis
• Dr Khayalethu Ntushelo (UNISA) – Metagenomic analysis of spoiled potato and tomato and the use of the dominant bacterial species in plant growth studies
• Ms Nikita Da Camara (UJ) – Proteome analysis of isonitrosoacetophenone-treated plant systems
• Prof Dave Berger (UP) – Genomics of grey leaf spot disease of maize: from the field to
• Dr Arnaud Djami-Tchatchou (UJ) – LPS perception leads to dynamic changes in miRNA profiles of Arabidopsis thaliana cells and leaf tissues
• Ms Sherrie-Ann New (UJ) – Investigation of the “Brassica-stunting disorder” affecting various Brassica crops in South Africa
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Story by: The ACGT team